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Basra Officials Seek Posession of MoD Land
Local Gov't and Iraqi Municipal Affairs Ministry in Joint Request
06/17/2009 8:04 PM ET
Local authorities in the southern province of Basra have teamed with the Iraqi municipal affairs ministry to seek local possession of lands held by the Iraqi Defense Ministry in the oil-rich city, in order to turn the lands from military to civilian use.

The Iraqi Ministry of Municipalities and Public Employment, along with the Basra Provincial Council have requestd that the Iraqi Ministry of Defense turn over lands owned by the Defense Ministry to municipal control for use in the urban planning of the city.

Jabbar Amin, the head of the Basra Provincial Council, confirmed to al-Malaf Press that there is an agreement between the Basra Provincial Council and the Iraqi Ministry of Municipalities and Public Employment to request several pieces of land belonging to the MoD be transferred to the municipal government of Basra for use in large-scale urban planning programs for the city, the agency reports in Arabic.

Amin added that the lands are in various areas of the city of Basra, and could be ecploited by the Basra municipality for investment in projects in the interest of the citizens of Basra.

Local officials seek to turn the land over to profitable purposes, or to host public housing to address a residential shortage in the province, the agency writes.

The Iraqi Ministry of Defense enjoys land holdings in the strategic city of Basra, much of it unused since the fall of the Ba'thist regime in 2003, al-Malaf Press notes.

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